Lateral Epicondylosis – Pathology & Tissue-Level Interventions
- Dr. Shawn Thistle
Lateral epicondylosis (LE) is an upper extremity condition in which patients present with pain at or around the lateral epicondyle, with or without distal radiation. It is a common complaint in workers, athletes and the general population, with prevalence ranging from 0.7-4.0% in the general population to up to 20% in assembly line workers. Given the direct and indirect costs of LE and impact on quality of life, it is important to understand the options for cost-effective care. Surveys demonstrate that patient education regarding activity modification continues to be considered a key intervention by hand therapists, occupation, and physical therapists, however, there is a scarcity of information regarding the specific details.
The goal of this literature review is to explore and integrate connections between tissue structures, function, environmental and personal factors for the management of patients with LE, using the framework provide by the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) by the World Health Organization. The authors intended to connect the biomechanics and pathology to specific motions during work, sports, and common daily activities to allow therapists, ergonomists, engineers and medical professionals to educate patients on how to adapt activities to reduce the intensity, frequency and duration of exposure to activities. It should be noted that this study did not intend to be a comprehensive review of the evidence regarding tissue level treatment, rather, to be a brief review of the mechanism of tissue level treatments presented in systematic reviews and randomized controlled trials from 2000 to 2021.
THIS WEEK'S RESEARCH REVIEW: “Lateral Epicondylosis – Pathology & Tissue-Level Interventions”
This paper was published in the Journal of Hand Therapy (2021) and this Review is posted in Recent Reviews, Elbow, Tendinopathy and the 2022 Archive.